ABSTRACT: Spinster homolog 2 (Spns2) acts as a Sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) transporter in zebrafish and mice, regulating heart development and lymphocyte trafficking respectively. S1P is a biologically active lysophospholipid with multiple roles in signalling. The mechanism of action of Spns2 is still elusive in mammals. Here, we report that Spns2-deficient mice rapidly lost auditory sensitivity and endocochlear potential (EP) from 2 to 3 weeks old. We found progressive degeneration of sensory hair cells in the organ of Corti, but the earliest defect was a decline in the EP, suggesting that dysfunction of the lateral wall was the primary lesion. In the lateral wall of adult mutants, we observed structural changes of marginal cell boundaries and of strial capillaries, and reduced expression of several key proteins involved in the generation of the EP (Kcnj10, Kcnq1, Gjb2 and Gjb6), but these changes were likely to be secondary. Permeability of the boundaries of the stria vascularis and of the strial capillaries appeared normal. We also found focal retinal degeneration and anomalies of retinal capillaries together with anterior eye defects in Spns2 mutant mice. Targeted inactivation of Spns2 in red blood cells, platelets, or lymphatic or vascular endothelial cells did not affect hearing, but targeted ablation of Spns2 in the cochlea using a Sox10-Cre allele produced a similar auditory phenotype to the original mutation, suggesting that local Spns2 expression is critical for hearing in mammals. These findings indicate that Spns2 is required for normal maintenance of the EP and hence for normal auditory function, and support a role for S1P signalling in hearing.
Project description:Progressive hearing loss is very common in the population but we still know little about the underlying pathology. A new spontaneous mouse mutation (stonedeaf, stdf?) leading to recessive, early-onset progressive hearing loss was detected and exome sequencing revealed a Thr289Arg substitution in Sphingosine-1-Phosphate Receptor-2 (S1pr2). Mutants aged 2 weeks had normal hearing sensitivity, but at 4 weeks most showed variable degrees of hearing impairment, which became severe or profound in all mutants by 14 weeks. Endocochlear potential (EP) was normal at 2 weeks old but was reduced by 4 and 8 weeks old in mutants, and the stria vascularis, which generates the EP, showed degenerative changes. Three independent mouse knockout alleles of S1pr2 have been described previously, but this is the first time that a reduced EP has been reported. Genomic markers close to the human S1PR2 gene were significantly associated with auditory thresholds in the 1958 British Birth Cohort (n?=?6099), suggesting involvement of S1P signalling in human hearing loss. The finding of early onset loss of EP gives new mechanistic insight into the disease process and suggests that therapies for humans with hearing loss due to S1P signalling defects need to target strial function.
Project description:Sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) is lipid messenger involved in the regulation of embryonic development, immune system functions, and many other physiological processes. However, the mechanisms of S1P transport across cellular membranes remain poorly understood, with several ATP-binding cassette family members and the spinster 2 (Spns2) member of the major facilitator superfamily known to mediate S1P transport in cell culture. Spns2 was also shown to control S1P activities in zebrafish in vivo and to play a critical role in zebrafish cardiovascular development. However, the in vivo roles of Spns2 in mammals and its involvement in the different S1P-dependent physiological processes have not been investigated. In this study, we characterized Spns2-null mouse line carrying the Spns2(tm1a(KOMP)Wtsi) allele (Spns2(tm1a)). The Spns2(tm1a/tm1a) animals were viable, indicating a divergence in Spns2 function from its zebrafish ortholog. However, the immunological phenotype of the Spns2(tm1a/tm1a) mice closely mimicked the phenotypes of partial S1P deficiency and impaired S1P-dependent lymphocyte trafficking, with a depletion of lymphocytes in circulation, an increase in mature single-positive T cells in the thymus, and a selective reduction in mature B cells in the spleen and bone marrow. Spns2 activity in the nonhematopoietic cells was critical for normal lymphocyte development and localization. Overall, Spns2(tm1a/tm1a) resulted in impaired humoral immune responses to immunization. This study thus demonstrated a physiological role for Spns2 in mammalian immune system functions but not in cardiovascular development. Other components of the S1P signaling network are investigated as drug targets for immunosuppressive therapy, but the selective action of Spns2 may present an advantage in this regard.
Project description:T cell expression of sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P) receptor 1 (S1PR1) enables T cell exit from lymph nodes (LNs) into lymph, while endothelial S1PR1 expression regulates vascular permeability. Drugs targeting S1PR1 treat autoimmune disease by trapping pathogenic T cells within LNs, but they have adverse cardiovascular side effects. In homeostasis, the transporter SPNS2 supplies lymph S1P and enables T cell exit, while the transporter MFSD2B supplies most blood S1P and supports vascular function. It is unknown whether SPNS2 remains necessary to supply lymph S1P during an immune response, or whether in inflammation other compensatory transporters are upregulated. Here, using a model of dermal inflammation, we demonstrate that SPNS2 supplies the S1P that guides T cells out of LNs with an ongoing immune response. Furthermore, deletion of Spns2 is protective in a mouse model of multiple sclerosis. These results support the therapeutic potential of SPNS2 inhibitors to achieve spatially specific modulation of S1P signaling.
Project description:The sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) transporter Spns2 regulates myocardial precursor migration in zebrafish and lymphocyte trafficking in mice. However, its function in cancer has not been investigated. We show here that ectopic Spns2 expression induced apoptosis and its knockdown enhanced cell migration in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells. Metabolically, Spns2 expression increased the extracellular S1P level while its knockdown the intracellular. Pharmacological inhibition of S1P synthesis abolished the augmented cell migration mediated by Spns2 knockdown, indicating that intracellular S1P plays a key role in this process. Cell signaling studies indicated that Spns2 expression impaired GSK-3? and Stat3 mediated pro-survival pathways. Conversely, these pathways were activated by Spns2 knockdown, which explains the increased cell migration since they are also crucial for migration. Alterations of Spns2 were found to affect several enzymes involved in S1P metabolism, including sphingosine kinases, S1P phosphatases, and S1P lyase 1. Genetically, Spns2 mRNA level was found to be reduced in advanced lung cancer (LC) patients as quantified by using a small scale qPCR array. These data show for the first time that Spns2 plays key roles in regulating the cellular functions in NSCLC cells, and that its down-regulation is a potential risk factor for LC.
Project description:Plasma sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) regulates vascular permeability, and plasma and lymph S1P guide lymphocyte egress from lymphoid organs. S1P is made intracellularly, and little is known about how S1P is delivered into circulatory fluids. Here, we find that mice without the major facilitator superfamily transporter Spns2 have a profound reduction in lymph S1P, but only a minor decrease in plasma S1P. Spns2-deficient mice have a redistribution of lymphocytes from the spleen to lymph nodes and a loss of circulating lymphocytes, consistent with normal egress from the spleen directed by plasma S1P and blocked egress from lymph nodes directed by lymph S1P. Spns2 is needed in endothelial cells to supply lymph S1P and support lymphocyte circulation. As a differential requirement for lymph and blood S1P, Spns2 may be an attractive target for immune suppressive drugs.
Project description:Sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P) is a pleiotropic bioactive sphingolipid metabolite that regulates numerous processes important for immune responses. S1P is made within cells and must be transported out of cells to exert its effects through activation of 5 specific cell surface GPCRs in an autocrine or paracrine fashion. Spinster 2 (Spns2) transports S1P out of cells, and its deletion in mice reduces circulating levels of S1P, alters immune cell trafficking, and induces lymphopenia. Here we examined the effects of Spns2 deletion on adaptive immune responses and in autoimmune disease models. Airway inflammation and hypersensitivity as well as delayed-type contact hypersensitivity were attenuated in Spns2(-/-) mice. Similarly, Spns2 deletion reduced dextran sodium sulfate- and oxazolone-induced colitis. Intriguingly, Spns2(-/-) mice were protected from the development of experimental autoimmune encephalopathy, a model of the autoimmune disease multiple sclerosis. Deletion of Spns2 also strongly alleviated disease development in collagen-induced arthritis. These results point to a broad role for Spns2-mediated S1P transport in the initiation and development of adaptive immune related disorders.
Project description:Sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P), a sphingolipid metabolite that is produced inside the cells, regulates a variety of physiological and pathological responses via S1P receptors (S1P1-5). Signal transduction between cells consists of three steps; the synthesis of signaling molecules, their export to the extracellular space and their recognition by receptors. An S1P concentration gradient is essential for the migration of various cell types that express S1P receptors, such as lymphocytes, pre-osteoclasts, cancer cells and endothelial cells. To maintain this concentration gradient, plasma S1P concentration must be at a higher level. However, little is known about the molecular mechanism by which S1P is supplied to extracellular environments such as blood plasma. Here, we show that SPNS2 functions as an S1P transporter in vascular endothelial cells but not in erythrocytes and platelets. Moreover, the plasma S1P concentration of SPNS2-deficient mice was reduced to approximately 60% of wild-type, and SPNS2-deficient mice were lymphopenic. Our results demonstrate that SPNS2 is the first physiological S1P transporter in mammals and is a key determinant of lymphocyte egress from the thymus.
Project description:The bioactive lysophospholipid mediator sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) promotes the egress of newly formed T cells from the thymus and the release of immature B cells from the bone marrow. It has remained unclear, however, where and how S1P is released. Here, we show that in mice, the S1P transporter spinster homolog 2 (Spns2) is responsible for the egress of mature T cells and immature B cells from the thymus and bone marrow, respectively. Global Spns2-KO mice exhibited marked accumulation of mature T cells in thymi and decreased numbers of peripheral T cells in blood and secondary lymphoid organs. Mature recirculating B cells were reduced in frequency in the bone marrow as well as in blood and secondary lymphoid organs. Bone marrow reconstitution studies revealed that Spns2 was not involved in S1P release from blood cells and suggested a role for Spns2 in other cells. Consistent with these data, endothelia-specific deletion of Spns2 resulted in defects of lymphocyte egress similar to those observed in the global Spns2-KO mice. These data suggest that Spns2 functions in ECs to establish the S1P gradient required for T and B cells to egress from their respective primary lymphoid organs. Furthermore, Spns2 could be a therapeutic target for a broad array of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.
Project description:Spinster homologue 2 (SPNS2), a transporter of S1P (sphingosine-1-phosphate), has been reported to mediate immune response, vascular development, and pathologic processes of diseases such as cancer <i>via</i> S1P signaling pathways. However, its biological functions and expression profile in colorectal cancer (CRC) is elusive. In this study, we disclosed that SPNS2 expression, which was regulated by copy number variation and DNA methylation of its promoter, was dramatically upregulated in colon adenoma and CRC compared to normal tissues. However, its expression was lower in CRC than in colon adenoma, and low expression of SPN2 correlated with advanced T/M/N stage and poor prognosis in CRC. Ectopic expression of SPNS2 inhibited cell proliferation, migration, epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), invasion, and metastasis in CRC cell lines, while silencing SPNS2 had the opposite effects. Meanwhile, measuring the intracellular and extracellular level of S1P after overexpression of SPNS2 pinpointed a S1P-independent model of SPNS2. Mechanically, SPNS2 led to PTEN upregulation and inactivation of Akt. Moreover, AKT inhibitor (MK2206) abrogated SPNS2 knockdown-induced promoting effects on the migration and invasion, while AKT activator (SC79) reversed the repression of migration and invasion by SPNS2 overexpression in CRC cells, confirming the pivotal role of AKT for SPNS2's function. Collectively, our study demonstrated the suppressor role of SPNS2 during CRC metastasis, providing new insights into the pathology and molecular mechanisms of CRC progression.
Project description:Background Most of the circulating sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) is bound to ApoM (apolipoprotein M) of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) and mediates many beneficial effects of HDL on the vasculature via G protein-coupled S1P receptors. HDL-bound S1P is decreased in atherosclerosis, myocardial infarction, and diabetes mellitus. In addition to being the target, the endothelium is a source of S1P, which is transported outside of the cells by Spinster-2, contributing to circulating S1P as well as to local signaling. Mice lacking endothelial S1P receptor 1 are hypertensive, suggesting a vasculoprotective role of S1P signaling. This study investigates the role of endothelial-derived S1P and ApoM-bound S1P in regulating vascular tone and blood pressure. Methods and Results ApoM knockout (ApoM KO) mice and mice lacking endothelial Spinster-2 (ECKO-Spns2) were infused with angiotensin II for 28 days. Blood pressure, measured by telemetry and tail-cuff, was significantly increased in both ECKO-Spns2 and ApoM KO versus control mice, at baseline and following angiotensin II. Notably, ECKO-Spns2 presented an impaired vasodilation to flow and blood pressure dipping, which is clinically associated with increased risk for cardiovascular events. In hypertension, both groups presented reduced flow-mediated vasodilation and some degree of impairment in endothelial NO production, which was more evident in ECKO-Spns2. Increased hypertension in ECKO-Spns2 and ApoM KO mice correlated with worsened cardiac hypertrophy versus controls. Conclusions Our study identifies an important role for Spinster-2 and ApoM-HDL in blood pressure homeostasis via S1P-NO signaling and dissects the pathophysiological impact of endothelial-derived S1P and ApoM of HDL-bound S1P in hypertension and cardiac hypertrophy.